Northern Liberties, or NoLibs, has been described as “a perpetually up-and-coming neighborhood that has permanently arrived.” It’s a testament to the youthful, electric energy of this neighborhood. Yes, Northern Liberties is full of hipsters, and you will either love it or hate it for that. NoLibs has been on the trendiness radar since the mid-90s, when greater affordability sent edgy, young types north out of Old City.
Within its boundaries (Girard Avenue and Callowhill Street north and south, the Delaware River and Sixth Street east and west), NoLibs is an eclectic mix of gorgeous historic buildings in the Federal, Italianate, and Greek Revival styles, desirable rowhouses, and small boutiques, bars, and restaurants. While the same can be said of almost any Philly neighborhood, the food here is honestly great.
The story of Northern Liberties is one of urban renewal. During the 19th century, the neighborhood was awash in tanneries, textile mills, and breweries. Business died off and left much of NoLibs abandoned and rundown. The 21st century brought with it the concept of green architecture, however, something that the “new” NoLibs has in spades. Early on, Northern Liberties became a haven for New Yorkers priced out of trendy Brooklyn. Now it has become a hotspot in its own right. Mellow residents (many adorned with tattoos) stroll the streets with their kids in strollers, patronizing the SuperFresh grocery store or checking out the small art galleries that dot the streets like stars in a constellation. Much of Northern Liberties is still being built, and it seems like every time you take a walk through the neighborhood, something new is going up. This is due to the vast amount of used factory space that was demolished in the late 20th century to make room for new urban housing, much of it bigger than in other areas around Center City. NoLibs is definitely on the grow, and it’s happening and exciting in a way that can’t be paralleled anywhere else in the city.
Real Estate Statistics
- Ave Price Per Sq. Ft: $315
- Average Price $692,155
- Highest Price: $7,150,000
- Lowest Price $600,000
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